Announcing the 2023 Magis Medal Winners
Sue Cesare (Loyola University Maryland ’08)
Sue Cesare was inducted into the Loyola University Maryland chapter of Alpha Sigma Nu in 2008 upon the successful completion of her Master of Arts degree in Pastoral Counseling. While raising her family and helping to manage her family’s business, Sue became deeply involved in her parish and the outreach to Baltimore’s homeless. In 1986, she was inspired to begin the Loaves and Fishes ministry to offer food and fellowship on the streets of Baltimore on weekend evenings. Loaves and Fishes not only offers practical support for the homeless population but has also afforded countless members of local churches and schools, including Loyola University Maryland, the opportunity to engage in direct service with the materially poor. The program continues to thrive to this day.
Sue has been deeply involved in the practice of spiritual direction and through Loyola Maryland‘s Office of Mission Integration, the sharing of the Spiritual Exercises of Saint Ignatius Loyola in their Annotation 19 format. Sue has volunteered hundreds of hours of her time and talent to direct (along with Fr. Tim Brown, S.J. and Steve Spahn, S.J.) Loyola’s Spiritual Exercises in Everyday Life program (SEEL). The SEEL program has allowed over 200 members of the greater Baltimore community, including alumni, friends, and colleagues at our Jesuit schools and parishes pray the Spiritual Exercises in their Annotation 19 format. Sue is a founding co-director of the Loyola Ignatian Formation Experience (LIFE) which trains spiritual directors to accompany others in the Spiritual Exercises.
Sue is the proud mother of Audrey Kennedy and John Comly, and a grandmother of six.
Lieutenant Commander Colleen Scott, DrPH, MPH, NREMT, CHES (Gonzaga ’01)
Lieutenant Commander (LCDR) Colleen Scott began her journey combating public health inequities before even learning what “public health” meant. Leveraging her Jesuit education and focus on service and social justice, she joined the AmeriCorps Learn & Serve program as a volunteer for sexual assault advocacy and community outreach at Gonzaga University. Colleen worked alongside a team of AmeriCorps volunteers using theatre performance as an educational outreach tool to ensure 18- to 22-year-old people across Spokane, Washington received knowledge and support services for sexual assault. Honoring her passion for service, she later spent 2.5 years as a health education and development Peace Corps volunteer in rural Zambia helping build village-level capacity to identify and prioritize health needs with local health clinics. During her time in Zambia, Colleen discovered the public health field dedicated to the science of protecting and improving the health of people and their communities. Driven to learn and develop the skills necessary to pursue a career in public health, she went back to school to earn both a Master’s and Doctorate of Public Health degrees.
Dedicated to improving the health of communities while also protecting the most vulnerable among us, Dr. Scott holds a Certificate in Complex Humanitarian Emergencies and completed her Master’s practicum working with health educators to improve HIV prevention and testing services in Kakuma and Dadaab Refugee Camps in Kenya. To continue serving communities across the globe and at home, Colleen applied and was selected to commission as a United States Public Health Service (USPHS) Officer: one of the eight Uniformed Services protecting our Nation and the only branch committed to the service of health. As a USPHS Officer, Colleen strives to protect, promote, and advance the health and safety of the nation. She has deployed 16 times, responding to public health emergencies including two deployments responding for the 2022 monkeypox outbreak, eight times for the COVID-19 pandemic, three times for hurricanes Irma, Harvey, and Maria, and twice for Ebola.
When not responding to public health emergencies, LCDR Scott works daily to halt the global HIV/AIDS pandemic at The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) as the Scientific Integrity Protocol Unit Lead for the Division of Global HIV and tuberculosis, her duty station for the last nine years. LCDR Scott supports HIV research and program activities in 44 countries ensuring scientific integrity, excellence, and ethics/human subjects protections in support of both CDC and The United States President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) missions combating the global HIV and tuberculosis pandemics.
Melodie Wyttenbach, Ph.D. ( Saint Louis University ’99)
Dr. Melodie Wyttenbach is the Executive Director of the Roche Center for Catholic Education at Boston College and a faculty member in the Lynch School of Education and Human Development. Recognized as a national leader in training superintendents, principals, and teachers for effective and principled leadership of Catholic elementary schools, Dr. Wyttenbach has had leadership positions at Boston College and the University of Notre Dame. Prior to Boston College, Dr. Wyttenbach first served as a president of a Nativity School in her home city of Milwaukee, after which she was appointed the Academic Director of the Mary Ann Remick Leadership Program at the University of Notre Dame from 2015 until 2019. The Mary Ann Remick Program is a component of the Alliance for Catholic Education (ACE) at Notre Dame. An inclusive leader, Dr. Wyttenbach continues to collaborate with the University of Notre Dame by organizing a council of superintendents of Catholic schools that provides guidance and reflection about leadership for superintendents from 24 dioceses across the United States.
As head of the Roche Center for Catholic Education at Boston College since 2019, she has introduced several new programs that support teachers and principals in Catholic schools across the United States. Among them include: a year-long program for teachers called DEI, which emphasizes Diversity, Equity, and Inclusivity in Catholic Schools; a masters cohort program in the Lynch School that extends over two years and two summers, and allows teachers to get a master's degree in education from Boston College even as they continue teaching during the year in their respective Catholic elementary or high schools; a summer immersion program for teachers to gain first-hand experience of the challenges faced by young Hispanic children who cross the southern U.S. border either accompanied or unaccompanied by parents, and a Summer Teacher Institute that includes training for recently hired teachers at East Coast Catholic elementary schools that provides them with basic teaching skills and then accompanies the teachers through the school year with one-on-one mentoring.
Another program Dr. Wyttenbachhas supported and expanded is a national network of two-way immersion learning at Catholic schools. This network facilitates the sharing of research and ideas in two-way language immersion programs nationwide that help students involved in bilingual, bicultural, and bi-literate educational ventures. She also co-directed a national study and report (“Cultivating Talent”) on the powerful influence of Catholic Hispanic teachers on attracting more Hispanic students to Catholic schools.
A mother of three young children, Dr. Wyttenbach and her husband also actively participate in a Sunday religious education series called “Breakfast with God” that reaches about 100 children weekly.